Madrid-based wholesale bank Cecabank and Chicago-based professional services firm Grant Thornton are joining forces to create Spain’s first blockchain consortium to collaborate on new financial services solutions.

One third of Spain’s banking sector has already committed to participate in the Blockchain Banking Consortium Cecabank and Grant Thornton have established to develop new applications for more efficient and secure financial services processes, the companies said in a Friday press release. Cross-industry collaboration is a popular way to build blockchain use cases, with other groups including R3 and the Ethereum consortium.

One of the consortium’s first projects is a system to combat money laundering and improve processes for verifying digital identities, which will be followed by additional proofs of concept leveraging blockchain technologies Ethereum or Hyperledger to streamline other bank processes and generate new business models, according to the release.

“This consortium allows us to have a privileged position in the market, since we are going to be the first to work with this technology in real terms,” Jaime Manzano, Cecabank’s head of reporting, operational management and training, said in the release.

Grant Thornton plans to work alongside Cecabank to develop solutions that will have broad industry application, added Luis Pastor, a partner of technology and innovation at Grant Thornton. “We are going to work so that this consortium ‘manufactures’ the first useful bank applications of blockchain, but also so that it becomes…an epicenter that third parties from different sectors can use.”

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